by William Campbell Douglas II, M.D.
The Big Carrot is Toronto’s largest health food store. As in the United States, people in Canada are starting to take
responsibility for their own health and this has alarmed the doctors, the pharmaceutical industry, and the government.
On March 26, 1997, The Big Carrot was inspected by a Health Protection Branch (HPB — Canada’s version of the FDA)
official and presented with a registered letter implying that as many as a third of the products sold on the premises were in
violation of the DIN drug directorate policies.
The word got out to several reporters and radio talk show personalities. The e-mail started buzzing and the faxes began
rolling across Canada — Canadians were outraged. It got so hot that the bureaucracy backed down. It was all a big mistake,
the inspector announced. He had confused The Big Carrot (remember this is the largest health food store in the city) with a
Was this just an honest mistake? Or was it part of a larger plan to crack down on Canada’s natural products industry?
Actually, what you are about to read is worse than either and, in fact, is bigger than all of Canada. Although I have been
fighting the developing police state in this country for 40 years, I didn’t believe what I am about to tell you. I thought it was
some sort of fabrication or misunderstanding on the part of one of my fellow-paranoids. But this is not a drill. It really is a
brazen alternative medicine take-over attempt by the United Nations, working through the GATT treaty imposed upon you
through Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, and their Republican/Democrat pals.
The World Health Organization’s "CODEX" is a threat to health freedom like nothing we have ever seen before. What is
CODEX is short for Codex Alimentarius (which is Latin for "nutrition code") and is the United Nations/World Health
Organization (WHO) commission’s attempt to establish worldwide standards for foods, drugs, pesticides, etc., and their
distribution and trade.
Few Americans have heard of the Codex Alimentarius Commission partly because it meets in Europe and has not been
publicized. This semi-secrecy is typical of the world government bureaucrats when they want to pass regulations with a
minimum of fuss from the people being regulated.
The stated purpose of CODEX is "to guide and promote the elaboration and establishment of definitions and requirements
for foods, to assist in their harmonization and, in doing so, to facilitate international trade."
But "facilitate" for whom?
Since being established in 1962, CODEX has produced 28 volumes of standards, guidelines, and principles, including 237
food standards and 41 hygienic and technological practice codes. CODEX has resulted in evaluations of the safety of over
700 food additives and contaminants and the setting of more than 3,200 maximum residue levels for pesticides — a
boondoggle to warm the heart of any bureaucrat.
The CODEX commission meets every two years and any delegate can propose a change in its standards. The Commission’s
latest outrage (in 1996) produced an ominous new threat to health-conscious consumers the world over when the German
delegation presented a bill called the "Proposed Draft Guidelines for Dietary Supplements."
The German plan calls for the following:
- No vitamin, mineral, herb, etc., can be sold for prophylactic (preventive) or therapeutic use.
- None sold as a food can exceed potency (dosage) levels set by the commission.
- CODEX regulations for dietary supplements would become binding — eliminating the escape clause within the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) that allow a nation to set its own standards.
- all new dietary supplements would automatically be banned unless they go through the CODEX approval process.
If these draconian measures are adopted, any party to GATT (which includes the United States) that does not accept the
new standards can be heavily sanctioned (fined) by the World Trade Organization (WTO). The WTO will have the right to
levy enormous fines on any nation that gets "out of line," with the potential to cripple entire sectors of that nation’s economy.
The sole U.S. delegate to CODEX has been Elizabeth A. Yetley, Ph.D., R.D., and FDA bureaucrat. So instead of the
proverbial fox in the hen house, we have representing us, a fox in the fox house. Responding to political pressure in the
United States, so far she has voted for health freedom, but with little result — at the last meeting the vote went 16-2 in favor
of the German proposal. I doubt we will hear much ranting and raving from our "representative" from the FDA.
You’re probably sitting back saying that nothing like this could happen to us in the U.S. — Congress wouldn’t let it happen. If
that’s what you’re thinking, you’re wrong.
Congress, in fact, surrendered much of its power to deal with the issue when it passed GATT. Under the GATT
agreement, member nations must "harmonize" their rules governing the manufacture of health and medical products with new
international standards so as to be "in line" with them. (I wonder if anyone in Congress actually read that clause before
signing the bill.) Republicans in Congress assured the American people, that GATT is not part of a world government trap —
do you believe that now?
Congress cannot rescind its vote on GATT — and, on the contrary, the single U.S. delegate to this international commission
can be outvoted by delegates from other countries; it’s called "international democracy." Two steps have already been taken
in the CODEX process, which is now at step three: The proposal is going to be formalized and written responses and debate
over its specific features will be undertaken.
In September, 1998, the next CODEX meeting will be held in Bonn, Germany. It could easily be driven through to
finalization at step eight unless enough countries oppose it.
Why would Germans be so interested in setting international standards on dietary supplements?
The answer lies in the list of international organizations "allowed" to send delegates to the Commission’s meetings. One
glimpse at the list and you’ll see that 90 percent of the delegates represented giant multinational pharmaceutical
corporations. The only "consumer" organization listed is the "International Organization of Consumers Unions," which means
that right now the general public has zero representation on this critically important committee — unless you’re naive
enough to think that a consumer’s union really represents you.
What supplements will CODEX "allow" you to have? NONE that you can afford. The drug companies are licking their
chops as they see the natural foods and health industry, (which has been eating into their profits) face wipe-out. The
ruthlessness of the pharmaceutical industry is clearly evident in this move to monopolize the health food and nutrient business
of the entire world.
I find it very upsetting that the German proposal before the CODEX commission is being heavily pushed by Hoechst, Bayer,
and BASF. These three companies were formed when IG Farben was disbanded after the Nuremberg War Trials because
of its role in manufacturing the poison gas used in the Nazi concentration camps.
Because of the influence these companies are exerting, Germany has been attempting to manipulate the CODEX Committee
on Nutrition and Foods for Special Dietary Use to further the interests of the German pharmaceutical industry, by raising
regulatory standards so that only the big drug companies can survive.
If you’ve been reading Second Opinion for very long, it shouldn’t surprise you that the major drug companies are behind
Nor should it surprise you that PharmaPrint, Inc., of Irvine, California announced on December 4, 1996, the world’s first
patent on a complex herbal molecule. That means that they have developed a process which can identify the active
compounds in herbs. As this publicly traded company has the direct backing of the World Health Organization, it is
increasingly obvious that the CODEX movement is an attempt to abolish herbal therapies all together.
PharmaPrint has announced efforts to create pharmaceutical versions of three of the most commonly traded herbs: saw
palmetto, for prostrate enlargement; ginger, to be patented for motion sickness; and St. John’s wort, to be patented for
moderate and mild forms of depression. PharmaPrint has been licensing other pharmaceutical companies to use their
And this is just the beginning. We saw at the beginning of this report that a CODEX-driven pharmaceutical takeover of the
natural products industry in Canada is already in full swing. In fact, possession of DHEA is now a felony in Canada,
carrying the same penalty as possession of crack cocaine, and foods are now being regulated as "drugs."
The pharmaceutical connected vitamin companies are "negotiating" with the HPB over the creation of a quasi-drug category
("nutraceutical") that would do nothing to stop the HPB from driving manufacturers, distributors, and retailers out of business.
If this happens, it will bar consumer access to a growing list of natural products, including DHEA, melatonin, fish oil,
cranberry, Hawthorne berry capsules, amino acids, chromium picolinate, and over 57 other common herbs.
The Canadian government now calls anything with therapeutic effects, medical claims, or any remote toxicity (even something
as harmless as loose stool — magnesium, or flushing — niacin) a drug under the minister of health’s new Food and Drug
Anyone who still doesn’t think this could happen in the U.S. had better wake up. The FDA says, in their own web site, that
they intend to "harmonize our domestic laws" with the draconian CODEX dictates: "FDA plans to amend its regulations and
procedures for consideration of standards adopted by CODEX. This action is being taken to provide for the systematic
review of CODEX standards in order to enhance consumer protection, promote international harmonization, and
fulfill obligations of the United States under international agreements" — which you never voted for. (Emphasis
added.) Go to the jackal’s den and read about their intentions from their own web site.
*NOTE: Please see addendum at bottom. John Hammell, of the Life Extension Foundation, is leading a very effective fight
against the CODEX proposals. Hammel said: "The FDA’s modus operandi is on record as ensuring that the existence of
dietary supplements on the market do not act as a disincentive for drug development." (FDA Dietary Supplement Task
Force Report, May 1993). In other words, the FDA’s policy is to encourage drug development and discourage the
use of dietary supplements.
Bureaucratic Fees — The Weapon of Choice
If the FDA gets its way, here’s how the system will work. In Canada, if claims are made on a natural product, the HPB then
requires that a "Drug Identification Number" be applied for. If this is done, and HPB deems the product safe, it can be
marketed as long as the manufacturer, distributer, and retailer pay costs of up to $720 per DIN number.
If no one has applied for a DIN, then no one can sell the product, and you can even be arrested for selling such innocuous
products as fish oil, Hawthorne berry, and cranberry capsules. That may not sound like much to even a small American
business, but if the DIN system were adopted in the U.S., these costs would be 10-20 times higher due to the market being
so much bigger. Now you’re talking about real money: $7,000 to $15,000 per number. Where does that leave the mom and
pop operation? It leaves them with nothing to sell.
On top of this outrage, under a "Cost Recovery" program, manufacturers will be assessed huge "site licensing fees." For
example, if a manufacturer sells four DIN products, he will have to pay an annual fee of $1,250 for Good Manufacturing
Practice inspections, plus an annual importer assessment fee of $1,562, plus an analysis fee of $1,250. Add to this the
foreign assessment fees (for an imported product), which are $2,500, plus all expenses for an HPB inspector to
travel to the foreign facility to inspect it — which could easily cost $5,000 per foreign facility per product. That will
not exactly promote international trade, ostensibly, a goal of the CODEX commission.
With all the taxes on manufacturers and fees at the retail level, and the millions that will be expended for enforcement (at least
$20,000,000), nutritional products in Canada will at least double in price. And this isn’t even the full dose of tyranny but a
compromise that supposedly "protects" the consumer!
Most Canadian businesses would be driven south to the states at these prices, and even so, the "underground" would
flourish, posing great harm to the health of consumers.
The highly successful American nutrient company, Nature’s Way, appears to be one of the traitor companies gearing up to
stick it to the little guys in the U.S. They’re in bed with the German company, Mandaus AG, which is having studies done at
Bastyr University on Echinacea for $385,000. Would Nature’s Way and Madaus AG be doing this if they weren’t expecting
big things in the U.S.? Will Bastyr University become compromised? Can you do studies for a pharmaceutical firm without
In the U.S., we are facing our own Canadian-style "compromise" — herbs and botanicals are scheduled for OTC treatment.
OTC stands for "over the counter," but don’t be misled by the term in this context. They are "over the counter" now, but in
health food stores. The new OTC regulations will involve expensive licensing, which will make them available only in drug
stores, and perhaps a few large chains, like GNC, that can afford the government payoffs, as described above. These
nutrients, if available at all, will double or even triple in cost.
Do you want your favorite supplements replaced by expensive, patented, over-the-counter or prescription drugs? I sincerely
hope your answer is a resounding NO!
But CODEX and the FDA see things differently and they pose the greatest threat to health freedom in the world today. If
they get away with the changes proposed by the Germans, you will no longer find the shelves of your local health food store
filled with vitamins.
What you will find is little besides "health food." You’ll find organic vegetables, macrobiotic staples, herbal shampoo, skin
creams, Birckenstock sandals, books on massage, and only a handful of multi-nutrient formulas in OTC drug form. The
closest thing to the products available to Americans today will be found only as high-priced prescription and over the
counter drugs found in pharmacies.
Action to Take
The FDA will be convening a public hearing wherein interested persons and organizations will be able to discuss and
question CODEX and the U.S. position on it. The FDA will then draft a final U.S. position paper to be submitted to
the five-day Bonn CODEX meeting. The paper will be highly influential in shaping the final proposed regulations. It is
vitally important that you write to:
Express your objections to the German CODEX proposal. Also write/fax your senators and congresspersons, as well
as every member of the Senate Labor Committee and the House Commerce Committee.
Reprinted by permission from Dr. William Campbell Douglass’ Second Opinion Newsletter. Copyright 1997 by Second
Opinion Publishing. For subscription information, please call 1-800-728-2288.